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All Politics Are Local

Updated: May 29, 2023



Yesterday at Plumb Alley Day in Abingdon, I had the opportunity for the first time to meet my opponent, the incumbent Supervisor for the C-21 District (Madison) on the Washington County Board of Supervisors, Charlie Hargis. Our conversation was brief, but I came away from it with a powerful sense of purpose in my campaign.

It went something like this.


“Hi Mr. Hargis, I’m Julianne Miles!”

“I’ve heard about you.”

“Next week we will be having an event showing a video about how rural democrats support

the second amendment. You should come.”

“You don’t support the 2nd Amendment. Your party doesn’t support it.”

“Do you support everything your national party supports?”

“No.”


Mr. Hargis doesn’t support everything his national party supports. I know this because he said so, and because he voted a few weeks ago to move money the county received from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) into a capital improvements account so that it won’t get pulled back if it isn’t spent by the deadline. The national Republican party did not support ARPA; Morgan Griffith, our congressman, voted against it; and Republicans in Congress want to pull back the funds that have not yet been spent. Mr. Hargis, and the local Republican supervisors, made sure that couldn’t happen. I applaud their action. That is millions of dollars that are very much needed in the county, and I would have voted for it myself. But it certainly isn’t very Republican.


Local politicians CAN support things that seem contrary to what the national party supports and still claim that political affiliation. As a rural Democrat, I fully support a citizen’s right to gun ownership. Rural people who live in remote areas often keep firearms for home defense,

hunting, and, well, critters. They also collect them the way other folks may collect tools, or art, or any other thing that people like to collect. I don’t think that right, to own firearms, means that we don’t regulate things that are dangerous. Clearly, we do. There are limitations on the types of weapons people can own, and AR-15 style weapons should be in that category. They are the weapon of choice for people who want to kill a lot of other people quickly. That doesn’t mean I don’t support the 2nd Amendment. Responsible gun ownership is a part of the culture of Southwest Virginia, and most of rural America, and must be honored. Any politician, Democrat or Republican or Independent, must look at how policies will work in their local area and legislate according to what is in the best interests of their local constituents.


My world view is as a Democrat, but I am running to represent all the citizens of the C-21

(Madison) District of Washington County and my first duty will be to work in their best

interests.


This post was written by Julianne Miles, Candidate for the Washington County Board of

Supervisors. This post was not approved or endorsed by Mr. Charlie Hargis.

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